Southern University, Grambling State alumni, fans flock to NOLA for 48th Annual Bayou Classic

Published: Nov. 27, 2021 at 10:32 AM CST
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NEW ORLEANS, La. (WAFB) - If you find yourself in New Orleans this weekend, chances are you won’t get far without seeing Columbia blue, black and gold.

Those colors represent two HBCUs coming together to face off in a legendary rivalry: the 48th Annual Bayou Classic.

RELATED: 48th Annual Bayou Classic kicks off; game to feature first coach-to-player electronic communication

Slated to take place on Saturday, Nov. 27, Bayou Classic brings together family, friends and alumni of Southern University and Grambling State University in a celebration of football and tradition surrounding Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

The Southern University Jaguars lead the Bayou Classic series with 24 wins. Grambling State University currently has 23 wins in the series.

RELATED: LDH to offer free COVID-19 vaccines at Bayou Classic events

According to the official website, Bayou Classic brings more than 200,000 visitors to New Orleans each year, with a $50 million economic impact during Thanksgiving weekend.

Take a look at the schedule of events below:


Annual Bayou Classic Parade: 9:30 a.m. start time

The Annual Bayou Classic Parade continues this year in traditional, New Orleans fashion with ten floats and more than 30 total units.


• This will be the first parade for area high schools since Mardi Gras 2020. High school band directors are saying, “The Bayou Classic Parade is kickstarting our entire parading season.”

• Participation by all of the top New Orleans area high school bands including LB Landry High School, St. Augustine High School and their Marching 100, Edna Karr High School, McDonough 35, Sophie B Wright High School and Warren Easton High School.

• As traditionally done, one out-of-state group will be in the parade. The Kansas City Marching Cobras Drum & Drill Team will be returning for their second Bayou Classic Parade. Leader Gregg James is a Southern alum.

• This will be the first appearance of Louisiana Bike Life, with an expected 80-100 member krewe riding custom cruiser bikes. There will be a special “Southern Jaguars” bike.

• The Grand Marshall for this year’s Annual Bayou Classic Parade is Mayor of the City of New Orleans, LaToya Cantrell.

Route details: Parade begins on Elysian Fields Avenue at N. Peters Street; proceeds down N. Peters St onto Decatur Street; turns right on Canal Street; turns left on St Charles Avenue; turns right on Poydras Street; turns right on Loyola Avenue; parade ends at Duncan Plaza located on Loyola Avenue at Perdido Street.

Bayou Classic Fan Festival: 11:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

The “Embrace the Culture” Stage is presented by The City of New Orleans, Office of Cultural Economy and the New Orleans Tourism and Cultural Fund

Champions Square at the Caesars Superdome

An extremely popular pre-game celebration where live musical performances and entertainment get the crowd warmed up for the game. The schedule of performers for this year includes:

• HaSizzle • HD4President • Mouse On Tha Track • Water Seed • Raj Smoove • DJ Jubilee • glbl wrmng • Brass-A-Holics • TBC BrassBand • DJ Retro

Fan Fest will be hosted by Courtney Mpagi of WBOK 1230am.

Students from the Central Creativity Robotics program will showcase the robots they built from reusable parts. This program fosters PreK-12 students’ creativity via the development of educational robotics in a dynamic, innovative and immersive atmosphere. The robots that will be on display at Fan Fest are those that have been built and recognized as part of the organization’s robotics build competitions. Fan Fest attendees will also enjoy sponsor activations and special giveaways throughout the event.

The 48th Annual Bayou Classic, Presented by Procter & Gamble: 4:00 p.m. (doors open at 2:30 p.m.) Caesars Superdome

NOTE: Media credentials needed to attend this event. More than 200,000 people come to New Orleans for the Bayou Classic weekend, and 50,000 - 60,000 make their way to the Bayou Classic game. The Bayou Classic commemorates historically black colleges and universities, academic achievement, tradition, sportsmanship, marching bands, and friendly competition. The “Classic” is an exhibition of the high standards of academic achievement deeply embedded in the traditions of the two institutions - Grambling State University and Southern University.

Other game highlights:

National anthem: The Crescent City All-Stars Band The Crescent City All-Stars Band is composed of 175 student musicians from 13 New Orleans area high schools. Each band director selects the best of the best musicians to participate. Band directors from all over the city are involved in the organization and rehearsals. The musical director is Trey Vernado from Young Audiences Charter and the volunteer leader is Sgt. Richard Blackman who heads the NOPD Events team. He was a trombone player in the Grambling Marching Tigers Band. This national anthem performance is fueling the kickstart of this all-star band after a period of forced dormancy following the pandemic outbreak.

The 48th Annual Bayou Classic Halftime Show

Presented by The Coca-Cola Company

The electrifying halftime show will feature the Grambling State University’s World Famed Marching Band and Southern University’s Human Jukebox and Dancing Dolls.



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